Lysius Salomon

Posted by hougansydney.com on Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Born on June 30, 1815 in Les Cayes to a small, but very influential family, part of the black elite of the South; Lysius Salomon was the President of Haiti from October 2, 1879 to August 10, 1888. His family was well known and highly educated. He came from exile in the Dominican Republic to be Faustin Soulouque's Minister of Finance. He again went to exile with his family, this time in France and England after the fall of Soulouque.
After his return from Paris in August 1879, Salomon became the country's President, with tremendous support from the people. He had excellent plans and visions to put the country back on track. His priorities were to restart public education, fix Haiti's financial collapse, restore agriculture productivity, improve the army and clean the public administration. He did not wait long to show the people that he really wanted to bring positive changes to the country, and that he was working hard to meet his goals. Within 4 months, he established the National Bank, he introduced the country's first postal system. and issued its first postal stamps. The following years of his presidency, Salomon's hunger to modernize the nation did not stop. He restructured the medical school, imported teachers from France for the lycees and universities. He also granted a British cable company the right to connect Port-au-Prince  and Kingston, then Mole Saint Nicholas to Cuba, the Army was also reorganized to 16.000. While Salomon fixed some of Haiti's problems and brought amazing changes to the tiny nation, he also was draining the country's resources to pay its debt to France. He also faced numerous rebellions from Haitian refugees in Jamaica and Cuba, who were closely working on a coup with the elite class of Port-au-Prince to overthrow him. Government buildings and records were burned, mass murdered of members of the elite class, merchants and foreigners. As a result, inflation grew drastically and with so much stress and too much to handle, Salomon left Haiti and returned to Paris were he died on October 19, 1888.



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